OPTIC-Vetted Policy Data Sets

One of OPTIC’s goals is to improve policymaking and the effectiveness of opioid policies by enhancing opioid policy science. As part of that effort, OPTIC is posting OPTIC-Vetted Policy Data Sets. The purpose of these data is to help the research and policy communities consistently define policy data variables, thereby improving policy data use, replicability and reproducibility of study findings.

The policy data areas currently available:

  • State laws and regulations for prescribing Naloxone in conjunction with additional medication;
  • State laws and regulations authorizing third-party prescribing and lay administration of Naloxone,
  • State laws providing protection from criminal sanctions to overdose victims or witnesses who seek emergency services;
  • State laws and regulations governing the operation and use of prescription drug monitoring programs; and
  • State laws and regulations sale and consumption of marijuana for therapeutic purposes.

How can OPTIC-Vetted Policy Data Sets contribute to better opioid policy science?

When researchers are assessing and comparing the effects of a given policy at the state level, it is essential to know the details of how individual policies are implemented. For example, prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMP) as they appear in state laws might look identical, but the functionality of the programs can differ by state. Our OPTIC-vetted data showcases these important distinctions for PDMPs and other opioid-related policies.

To create the OPTIC-Vetted Policy Data Sets, OPTIC investigators consulted with public health lawyers in synthesizing data sets and corroborating key elements of each policy that are important for influencing opioid outcomes based on theory and evidence. These variables will provide better guidance about which elements of laws are most important to adopt. For example, for PDMP to be effective, state laws must specify that doctors MUST access the PDMP before prescribing. However, even if the state law clearly states this requirement, if the PDMP is not updated daily, but is updated weekly instead, it cannot be as effective.

Please cite the use of these data as "RAND-USC Schaeffer Opioid Policy Tools and Information Center. [YEAR]. OPTIC-Vetted [DATASET TITLE]. Obtained from https://www.rand.org/health-care/centers/optic/resources/datasets.html on [DOWNLOAD DATE]."

Download the Datasets

Co-prescribing Naloxone Policy Data (.zip file)

Naloxone Policy Data (.zip file)

Good Samaritan Policy Data (.zip file)

PDMP Policy Data (.zip file)

Medical Marijuana Policy Data (.zip file)